BREAKING NEWS: Sudden protest against BLM censorship, wild horse roundups and using PZP (pesticide) to manage wild horses to extinction

PM Edita Cat

 

BLM refused to hear public comments at “public” meeting

MINDEN, NV (January 22, 2015)—Edita Birnkrant, Campaigns Director for Friends of Animals (FoA) flew out from New York City with FoA correspondent Nicole Rivard to give public comments at the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) public meeting about the Carson City District Draft Resource Management Plan which calls to zero out 6 treasured herds of wild horses. After being denied her rights at the public meeting, held at the Carson Valley Inn in Minden, Nevada this afternoon, Birnkrant took over the microphone at the BLM meeting and held up yellow crime scene tape while Rivard filmed the protest against censorship and managing wild horses to extinction. Birnkrant was threatened with arrest by Nevada Sheriffs while holding up her banner. The hotel manager made Rivard stop filming and told the advocates they were being thrown out of the hotel, even though they had booked rooms there that night.

 

Statement from Edita Birnkrant:

“While we were waiting to go into the meeting a man told a BLM staffer “I wanna open up a horse butcher shop”. Then a few other guys started making jokes about how tender horse meat is. The BLM guy just chuckled but didn’t tell them it was inappropriate.

I was outraged that the BLM dared to hold a “public ” meeting and forbid the public from speaking. I took over the microphone to call out the sham of a BLM meeting, that shut out the public, and I said that Friends of Animals was there tonight to oppose the BLM’s extinction plan for wild horses in Nevada. I said the BLM is managing wild horses to extinction through roundups and PZP and we are outraged and demand it stop. I held our banner that said “Stop the BLM’s Criminal Reign of Terror. Protect Wild Horses Under the Endangered Species Act” The sheriffs were surrounding me at that point threatening to arrest me unless I left. I still had the banner and was shouting “the BLM is charged with crimes against wild horses”.

Then the hotel manager at the Carson Valley Inn in Minden, Nevada—Phil Dohrn–started bullying us and got in Nicole’s face. He pushed against her—blocking the camera and told her she had to shut her video off and we were getting thrown out.

Three extremely hostile sheriffs and the Carson Valley Inn manager escorted us to our rooms and waited outside while we packed our bags. They pounded on the door to hurry us or they’d arrest us. They called additional sheriffs to the hotel during all this. We left the hotel shocked that the Carson Valley Inn treats paying guests who exercise their First Amendment rights in their meeting room like this.”

The federal plan for public land in the Reno/Carson area is of interest to all Americans from coast to coast. Citizens care about public land and want federally protected wild horses protected by the law that allows them to roam freely without harassment.

PZP is an EPA approved restricted-use pesticide (http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/chem_search/reg_actions/pending/fs_PC-176603_01-Jan-12.pdf) that sterilizes wild mares after multiple use. Americans are learning about the dangers of PZP and are outraged the BLM would allow this to be used on wild horses.

Friends of Animals, an international animal protection organization founded in 1957, advocates for the rights of animals, free-living and domestic around the world. www.friendsofanimals.org

# # #

Friends of Animals’ public comments that advocates were not allowed to read and were given to Collen Sievers the BLM BLM Project Manager for Carson City District at the public hearing on the draft resource management plan for Carson City District

Edita Birnkrant, FoA’s campaigns director 917-940-2725

The opinion of the American public, as declared through Congress is clear: “wild free-roaming horses and burros are living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West; they contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation and enrich the lives of the American people.” BLM has an obligation to consider wild horses as an integral part of the natural system of public lands.

It appears from the Carson City’s Draft Resource Management Plan (RMP) and Environmental Impact Statement that the BLM failed to take into consideration critical information about wild horses and failed to consider any alternatives that promote a free and viable wild horse population.

Friends of Animal is here to urge BLM to reevaluate its Resource Management Plan.

We ask that BLM consider an alternative that: (1) maintains all wild horse herd management areas; (2) prohibits conflicting uses on herd management areas; and (3) prohibits efforts to eradicate wild horses, such as round-ups, fertility control and sterilization. BLM must take into consideration the small population of wild horses and the potential that they will be listed as a threatened or endangered species under the Federal Endangered Species Act. From a scientific perspective, wild horses on our public lands are at risk of extinction if BLM does not change its management plans.

BLM does not provide adequate area for wild horses. Under the current RMP, approximately 4.8 million acres of public lands covered by the plan are open for private ranchers to graze cattle and sheep while only 1.2 million acres are reserved for wild horses. In the preferred alternative the ratio or area available for cattle and sheep grazing is also more than 4 times that available for wild horses.

Moreover, under no alternative, are cattle and sheep prohibited from grazing on wild horse herd management areas. BLM must consider an alternative that provides contiguous habitat for wild horses to roam freely.

Second, all alternatives for the proposed Resource Management Plan allows BLM to continue managing horses at artificially low populations, or appropriate management levels. This results in expensive, and cruel round-ups that tear the wild horses from their homes and families and place them in tax funded holding facilities. This is one of the largest threat to wild horses on U.S. lands. Experts have warned that the “majority of wild equid populations managed by the BLM are kept at population sizes that are small enough for the loss of genetic variation to be a real concern.”

The Equid Specialist Group of IUCN Species Survival Commission recommends minimum populations of 2,500 individuals for the conservation of genetic diversity. Others have warned that populations managed with a target size of fewer than 500 horses are at some risk of losing more than 90 percent of selective neutral genetic variation over a period of 200 years.

There are no herds that have a large enough population to meet the recommendation of the IUCN Species Survival Commission – 2,500 animals—and only 1 out of 17 of the herd management areas in this planning area has an appropriate management level set to 500 or more. Limiting horses to an artificially low number is short-sighted and ineffective because it could prompt short-term population growth.

Finally, Friends of Animals submitted a petition to the US Fish and Wildlife Service asking it to recognize wild horses as threatened or endangered. The Endangered Species Act requires the government to make final determination on the petition within 12 months – which would be this June. The BLM should not undermine this legal process by allowing BLM to round-up and remove wild horses from Carson City herd management areas. Not only would such actions undermine the Endangered Species Act, but they would also put the viability of the horses here at risk. Instead the plan should recommend BLM halt all efforts to remove wild horses, and allow Fish and Wildlife Service to review the law and facts in regards to wild horses.
Nicole Rivard, correspondent, FoA 203-910-1217

As my colleague just pointed out, all but one of the 17 herd management areas in the Carson City District has an appropriate management level set to 500 or more. Everywhere else the loss of genetic viability is a real concern. So additional roundups, which destroy social structure that can lead to population spikes, as well as consideration of administering fertility control, should be removed from this Carson City District Plan immediately if not sooner.
While some wild horse advocates may claim fertility control drugs, such as PZP, is the lesser of two evils, we at FoA believe birth control is equally harmful and inhumane as roundups. In most cases—even the BLM admits this—wild horses would still have to be captured to be treated with the pesticide before being released.

The widespread use of PZP is really very contrary to the true core intent of the Wild Horse and Burro Act of 1971, which was to restore wild horses as naturally, integrated, harmonious components of the public land ecosystem who are not overly tampered with. Deciding which animal should give birth or not is a very invasive, unacceptable thing to do to these wild animals.

Studies have revealed adverse effects of PZP— that it sterilizes wild horses after multiple uses and results in risky foal birth out of season and significant behavioral changes that can affect the health of the herd.

BLM’s discussion regarding a population control program in the EIS is inaccurate and unsupported. They claim fertility control limits the stress of pregnancy on mares, and helps stallions as they will not be exerting extra energy fighting to control mares or raising foals.

What about the stress on mares of not being able to get pregnant as nature intended!

We urge the BLM to look beyond data provided by the Humane Society of the United States, which has a vested interest in PZP as it is the registrant of the pesticide, and Jay Kirkpatrick, the director of the Science and Conservation Center, which produces the active ingredient in PZP. For instance a 2009 Princeton University study of the horses on Shackleford Banks in North Carolina, who began getting PZP in 2000, showed that prolonged infertility has significant consequences on social behavior.

Researchers found that females who were receiving contraception were much more likely to change groups. Normally bands are really very stable, said researcher Cassandra Nunez, and mares will stay with males much if not all of their lives. That stability is really important for the health of the group members. Foal mortality increases when there are a bunch of different changes, and parasite load of animals in the group can go up because they are getting more stressed.

In a later study in 2010, Nunez found that recipients of PZP also extend the receptive breeding period into what is normally the non-breeding season, resulting in foal birth out of season.

Normally the winter is spent eating as much as they can, and everyone is more relaxed. Males tend to let females roam farther, which is good because food is patchier. So all of this is changing because of extended cycling.
Nunez also noted it’s taking a while for the contracepted mares, who were taken off PZP in 2009, to respond physiologically. So that flexibility that you think you have with PZP…it’s not really that flexible.”

It is imperative that BLM reduce the number of cattle and sheep allowed to graze on public lands, as well as consider holistic resource management plan, such as reserve design, which is described in detail in Craig Downer’s Book the Wild Horse Conspiracy. Both options would adequately protect these majestic animals so that they can persist for future generations.

Friends of Animals, an international animal protection organization founded in 1957, advocates for the rights of animals, free-living and domestic around the world. www.friendsofanimals.org

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BLM Nevada News
CARSON CITY DISTRICT OFFICE NO. CCDO 2015-11
FOR RELEASE: November 28, 2014
CONTACT: Lisa Ross, 775-885-6107, lross@blm.gov

Draft Resource Management Plan Environmental Impact Statement Available for
BLM Carson City District

Carson City, Nev. – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is asking the public to review and comment on a Draft Resource Management Plan (RMP) and Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Carson City District. The draft plan will affect approximately 4.8 million acres of public land. The comment period opened with the publication of a notice of availability in the Federal Register on November 28, 2014. Comments will be accepted during a 120-day period which closes March 27, 2015.

Public meetings to review and comment on the draft EIS will be announced at least 15 days in advance in local newspapers and on the BLM website.

The plan will address: Areas of Critical Environmental Concern, lands and realty, utility corridors, wind energy, travel management, recreation, fish and wildlife, minerals, wild and scenic rivers, public health and safety, and visual resource management.

Public meetings on the Draft RMP/Draft EIS are currently scheduled for 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.; on January 13, at the John Ascuaga’s Nugget (1100 Nugget Ave.) in Sparks, Nev.; on January 15, at the Fallon Convention Center (100 Campus Way) in Fallon, Nev.; on January 20, at the Mineral County Library (First & A Street) in Hawthorne, Nev.; on January 22, at the Carson Valley Inn (1627 US Hwy 395 N) in Minden, Nev.; and on January 29, at the Yerington Elementary School (112 N. California St.) in Yerington, Nev. An additional public meeting will be held from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., on January 24, at the Carson City Plaza Hotel and Event Center (801 South Carson Street) in Carson City, Nev. Additional public meetings are anticipated in coordination with local County Commissions and Boards of Supervisors.

Written comments related to the Carson City District Draft RMP/Draft EIS may be submitted by any of the following methods:
• Website: http://on.doi.gov/1uYBNGT• E-mail: BLM_NV_CCDO_RMP@blm.gov
• Fax: 775-885-6147
• Mail: BLM Carson City District, Attn: CCD RMP, 5665 Morgan Mill Rd., Carson City, NV 89701.

Copies of the Carson City District Draft RMP/Draft EIS are available in the Carson City District Office at the above address or on the following website: http://on.doi.gov/1uYBNGT

Visit The Facebook Forum on PZP for more https://www.facebook.com/groups/ForumPZPWildHorsesBurros

#horses #animals #AnimalCruelty #FreeSpeech #Nevada #Tourism #WildHorses #mustangs #Tesla #money #energy #mining #water #yelp #hotel #travel #Reno #Tahoe #Sheriff #Carson #PZP #EPA #roundup #America

22 thoughts on “BREAKING NEWS: Sudden protest against BLM censorship, wild horse roundups and using PZP (pesticide) to manage wild horses to extinction

  1. when freedom of speech is denied, you may be certain that some interest in profit making from corporations are being threatened. The plan to drive our wild horses into extinction via roundup and PZP is done at the behest of corporate interests in mining, fracking, cattle ranching and Big Pharmacy’s interest in using our wild horses as guinea pigs for their next disastrous drug promising fertility control but in fact delivering death by interrupting natural cycles.

  2. PZP is a poison stop giving it to our wild horses n burros you are killing them and their right to live free and wild. It is sterilizing our wild mares STOP PZP USE AND STOP THE ROUNDUPS.

  3. When a government entity tries to block a basic American right — freedom of speech, which is guaranteed in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution — there is a deep problem that is quite disturbing.

  4. I totally appreciate the hostility and rough treatment experienced by Birnkrant & Rivard having been roughed up by 4 BLM & USFWS security guys & had my cameras seized and media taken from them at the Cibola Trigo Roundup in AZ in June 2012. It can be frightening -most especially when your basic consititutional rights of free speech, of the press and of assembly are being trampled by federal officials in league with local officials. In Cibola, the local sheriffs actually had the cooler heads, but it sounds like they were on par with BLM bullies in Carson City.

    What happened in Carson City was not merely about another several roundups, but embodied the brass-knuckled conspiracy against the very existence of wild horses & burros in the West. It is not merely driven by BLM, but by several groups of “good ole boys” in wild horse country: spearheaded by the welfare ranchers and local businessmen they work with, local, state and federal politicians whose services they buy * rent when needed, and often the ‘local law’ who do the bidding of the powers that be. This is a formidable opposition for any small handful of advocates to grapple with, as it always seems like there are more of them than US and they have guns, tasers, handcuffs and can hide behind the law -even as they violate statute after statute.

    I cannot offer a silver bullet solution to overcoming these long odds, although securing native species and endangered species status for wild horses & burros is critical to any winning strategy. Until that happens, wild horses & burros will continue to be denigrated as feral strays, -homeless mongrels which belong nowhere – notwithstanding the Wild Horse & Burro Act which BLM has alsways regarded as a major stumbling block to pursuing their main agenda: leasing federal lands for commercial exploitation -but at firesale prices. Given that, is it any wonder that those who have fed at the public trough for so long would feel threatened by those who cry ‘foul’ and try to expose the corruption ? Why was Christ crucified, Joan of Arc burned and other rabble rousers of their eras ? Naturally because they threatened the established order of privilege for the self-selected few.

    Yesterday’s incident in Carson City was nothing less than a flash point in an ongoing battle over land, water and other resources in the rapidly vanishing western frontier, a skirmish in an ongoing battle. The good news is that it clearly indicates that the good ole boys are getting rattled and frightened so much so that they’re ganging up on & harrassing women -in public while hiding behind badges & uniforms.
    This is no time to back down, but rather to press on, or all will be lost -soon enough. To quote Martin Luther King : ” In the end we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends”. Lets not be silent, lets not go quietly and meekly into a dark future without wild & free critters and landscapes. Let us all be true Friends of Animals and Protectors of Mustangs & Burros and be proud and bold in doing so, like Editha & Nicole were yesterday .

  5. I hope FOA files a suit against the BLM for denying them freedom of speech and also harassment against the Inn! They are so emboldened now with getting away with murder that they don’t care who they harm. This president better start taking notice. The people need to be heard!!

  6. Just as in Nazi Germany before WWII, Hitler and gang went on a robust and aggressive charge to rid Germans of their dignity – or redefine their dignity within a more “ability-to-manipulate” people, and still receive the virtues of money, power, and land from these same people. Ironically, we do not have to explore the history so much as watch as it unfolds today, within the Bureau of Land Management, Legislators, and corporations — and their manipulation directed toward the American Taxpayers and Public alike! Disgusting behavior.

    The points here being the aggressive coercive bully tactics used, for example –

    1. Holding Public Meetings for general Taxpayer and American Public input, then not allowing the input, and due to situations within BLM employee minds — simply the wrong people going to supply that same input, and the information, though contrary to the situation or plans at that moment, are truthful – and truth is not acceptable within the BLM, which is nothing more than a corporate franchise monopoly on America’s Public Lands;

    2. The criminality, that is often brought up by the American Taxpayers, in this case those who the BLM call Horse Advocates within an attempt to lessen the impact negatively, certainly want the criminal aspects NOT to come out into the open at all, and references as well as many circumstances show beyond a reasonable doubt criminal activity has, and continues to take place;

    3. Then we can get to welfare ranching and corporate intrusion and the spending of American Taxpayer’s dollars, yours and mine, in the billions, and only due to the protective elements that this government agency – the BLM and many legislator’s – refrains from simply deleting/void the antiquated and convoluted aspects that allow such government subsidies to be spent upon such non-beneficial as well as non-profitable elements, other than the welfare ranchers and corporations themselves making a lot of money for doing absolutely nothing.

    When one considers legislators’ attempting to take away Social Security Benefits, Disabled Veterans Benefits, and other obtained benefits of necessities – i.e. the most tarnished is the school lunch programs for impoverished children, where legislators’ took that away from them in order to give more net profit to corporations and welfare ranchers – then America has a Problem – A big Problem that American Taxpayer’s need to know about!

    And much worse – these people receiving these ill-gotten subsidies sitting in the crowd and actually Booing people that attempt to practice their 1st and 5th Amendment Rights of the Constitution of Our United States of America.

    As a war Veteran myself, I am appalled and totally disgusted at this showing of such disrespect, such disregard to American Taxpayers and the use of their hard earned money for nothing but a scam, and the disrespect these welfare ranchers, BLM employees, and hotel staff has shown against not only the Taxpayers of this land, but toward our horses, our Disabled Veterans, and America’s Elderly folks who help build and nourish this country and America’s Rights to speak out against government agency perversions, subversions, and irresponsible conduct.

  7. This was highly illegal. A publi meeting is just that. Yhey just hury themselves ss they csn be sued for not letting Friends of Animals speak. They are really scared if you ask me. Id yheit s lawyer ee can trust that is willing to fight for the Horses . The BLM are very scared no reason to fear Friends of Animals speak unless yhey ste scared . Public opinion witj facts yhst are true causes fear. Now hoe do we go about this correctly? PZP is being used because the man supplying it wants his cut.
    Sad state of affairs when they are running scared like an old time westerner that takes over a town. Throwing you all out may be the best thing that ever happened to bring this out in the open. Thehotel had no right to get involved so he too is in on this. We need a good wild horse lawyer. They brroke the law in the name of slaughtering Americas wild horses. We can not give up now. What we do next can be a turning point. We need media hype, but it must be done without malice.

  8. I am outraged by the BLM’s hostile actions at the Public meeting. What can we do? We need coverage by TV stations and George Knapp in his newspaper in Las Vegas.

  9. BRAVO, Edita Birnkrant!!! Where did our freedom of speech go? You’re one woman making a difference, educating Americans as to what really goes on…..

  10. America will no longer be silenced by the BLM!! We are America is the home of the free and the brave!! The silence has letting BLM drive our Wild Horses into extinction!!! OUR WILD HORSES BY THE THOUSANDS HAVE ALREADY BEEN TORTURED, SOLD, SLAUGHTERED, SUFFERED, SO MANY HAVE DIED!! WE WILL NOT LET THIS CRUELTY CONTINUE TO HAPPEN, WE ARE RESPONSIBLE, THEIR VOICE, WE ARE PEACEFULLY FIGHTING FOR THE WILD HORSES AND THEIR RIGHT TO LIFE , RESPECT, PROTECTION, FAMILIES, FREEDOM!!!!!! END THE BLM NOW!! America knows now that Wild Horses belong on our Public Lands as they restore lands, prevent Forest Fires and this is how they help protect us and our Eco Systems! America wants to keep our Native Wild Horses and Wild Burros is right here, free and protected, roaming on our Public Lands!!!
    Tina Wooten
    4 Wild Horse Rights

  11. They have gone too far. I would contact American Civil Liberties Union,. This is outrageous. Thank you FOA for standing up to these criminals.

  12. When the freedoms of our founding Fathers are denied to wild horses and to tax paying voting Americans at a public meeting we have to ask what next? Clearly this Administration plans embark upon a war —silent in secret and without transparency or accountability while asking you and I to pay their salaries——hmmmm and what part of rise up people and take a stand is unclear ? There is no more time to wait.

  13. It’s time for JUSTICE!
    Horses saved my life and I WILL save them!
    This is a poem I wrote for our wild horses!
    I was loved in the hearts of the beautiful
    people. I was their symbol of hope, And
    freedom. I was also a symbol of Power,
    Grace, Beauty, Nobility, Strength, But most
    of all when people seen me running free,
    It gave them a strong motivation for life.
    Some say that we earned our freedom, We
    even fought with our soldiers as we
    carried them to war, I even helped build
    America. As I am a big part of history…. I
    am the American Wild Mustang!
    Written by; Meghan Dixon
    They were born wild, They were born
    free as the die in greed, Now they are
    a memory soon to be! I will keep
    fighting forever until they are truly
    free! This is the fate of American’s
    Wild Mustang Horses.
    – Meghan Dixon
    Horses EARNED their freedom! They do EVERYTHING for us. They even helped serve for our country by fighting with soldiers in war and now they are still helping our American soldiers by helping them in their battles of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder! They do everything for us! The wild horses DO NOT deserve this! The Mustang is just as American as the American people! we DO NOT want PZP on our wild horses! The mustangs are in huge trouble and if the BLM permits the Mustang to disappear we WILL deserve the accusations! This is a MAJOR American tragedy! We owe it to our wild horses. LEAVE them ALONE, PLEASE!
    This is a story I am working on that will help save the horses once it is done and I edit it.
    Some people may look at a horse and think “oh that’s just a horse” this story will change the way you look at the horse. Through out the years horses have been used for a lot of things pulling wagons, helping gather cattle, competitions, ranch work, the pony express, they carried our soldiers as they fought with them in the war, the horse is even what helped build America, But now you get to witness them playing a different role.

    Hey There Everyone,
    My name is Meghan Dixon, a simple small town girl from a spot on the map, down on the farm town in Texas. You may look at me and think that I am just a normal girl, That I have my things all together, You may think I am like everyone else. What others don’t know is that I am the example of survival and Growing up, that was not really my title. This is my true story, one that the Man Up Stairs has allowed for through hope, healing, and recovery through the horse of course!

    I was diagnosed with a Autism Spectrum Disorder known as “Asperger Syndrome” at a very young age. Living with this type of disability affected me in so many ways. It consumed me. I was lost in a world where I could not communicate or understand others; it made it almost impossible for me to make friends with people. Asperger Syndrome is the most misunderstood disability in the world today. People do not understand me and I sure don’t understand them! It was as if I was from a different alien planet – but I was the alien.

    I get locked out of the world. All on the sole account or simple justification, I am different. I am treated cruel for little reason. I always look in the mirror and ponder to myself, “What is wrong with me”, “Is it the way I look, or the way I dress” I just don’t understand why? I don’t think I will ever know why. I never could grasp the concept or completely understand how they could judge someone that they truly did not understand or even know. None really instigated an attempt to understand me. They only retreated to the simplistic, band wagon task of assuming I was different than the norm in which, made it right for them to mistreat me. A devious illusion created by fear, laziness, and down right pure immaturity.

    My life has seemed to be a huge struggle, full of ups and downs, rises and falls. It seems like I am always getting myself into situations and I am the one who always seems to be getting hurt. I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety. I started telling my Mom at the age of 9 “I wish I was dead”! When I was a child, every night before I went to sleep, I would pray to God and Jesus and ask, “Please give me a true friend!” I would even put on my Christmas list every year for a friend when I was a kid. No one wanted to be my friend. I would struggle with things that normal children didn’t struggle with. I have always had meltdowns, And would do things that other kids didn’t do.

    I started to self harm at a very young age so I struggled for years with self harm. It started at the age of 2 I would bite myself. I would bite my arm, hands and fingers because of my Autism when I had trouble communicating the first reaction would be to self harm so I could release built up tension and frustration. I didn’t know how to communicate and when I got mad or upset that’s how I would express my feelings. I then started throwing myself down on the ground and had violent tantrums due to my Autism. So it seemed like self harm was my way of lashing out and communicating.

    I been mocked, teased, bullied, laughed at, rejected, and judged for things that are way beyond my control. As I got older the bullying then escalated. When I was a teenager everything started to fall apart. My Mom fought for me everyday. She would have to go to school meetings everyday and would fight the school system. I faced a lot of discrimination from the schools. The teachers and the principle would even bully me along with the students. No matter how hard my Mom tried to fight for me they bullied her to. They told her that I was manipulative, a brat, spoiled, and that all I need is discipline. They would even tell us things like Asperger Syndrome is not a real disability that my Mom made it up. They would even say my Mom was crazy at times. So it was like my Mom was fighting for nothing. They told my Mom that she was just a bad parent.

    They (The Bullies) called me names like “fat”, “freak”, “retard”. “Worthless”, “loser”, “ugly”, “annoying”, and A LOT of other things. I even been told plenty of times to go kill myself, they even told me that God put me here as a joke, that I’m a mistake. They said unimaginable things to me. The students at the school I went to, Made me feel like a parasite that infected the world. They judged my outside without knowing my inside. There was even times when the teachers and even the principle at the school gave the bullied permission to bully me! I also have a learning disability I was defiantly not the teacher’s favorite student. They would label me and call me un-teachable. I have a disability that no one can see, not all disabilities are visible, mine are invisible.

    I was not able to defend myself from the bullying. Most teachers would call me a liar when I would reach out for help with the bullying. Then sometimes certain teachers had favorite students that would bully me and when I would reach out to report that students bullying the teacher would stand me up in front of the whole class just to call me a liar! I even got voted off all the lunch tables, I had to eat lunch in the bathroom, Because No one wanted me at their table. One time at a field day the teachers, principle, And school made me participate in the games. We were playing base ball, I hit the ball wrong, And all the other students on the team were yelling at me, And making fun of me, The team I was on blamed me for them losing the game, Then one boy punched me in the stomach, And the team mates were spitting on me. The teachers did not care that this happened. The teachers just labeled me as difficult or unteachable. The teacher who gave the students permission to bully me, Her and a coach who bullied me stood me up in front of everyone in gym class and would say “Why can’t you be normal and be like everyone else!” Then it got to where when I would report the bullying the teachers and school would just say that I was a tattle tale.

    The bullies would also trip me in the halls at school, they would start rumors about me, Say things that wasn’t true, and they would even push me out of the lunch lines. When I would cry or become upset and have a ‘meltdown’, they would stand there and laugh. I was not able to defend myself from the bullying. I also have a few health problems so I been a little bigger then other girls the medication the put me on made me gain weight. The boys at the school and other students would talk about how fat and ugly I am.
    I then began to starve myself at times and made myself throw up after I would eat at times. I hated myself and who I was. I hated my skin, my body, and my hair!

    They even sent me to a school where the kids go who get in trouble. I was treated like a prisoner there.

    The bullies would also trip me in the halls at school, they would start rumors about me, Say things that wasn’t true, and they would even push me out of the lunch lines. When I would cry or become upset and have a ‘meltdown’, they would stand there and laugh. I was not able to defend myself from the bullying. I also have a few health problems so I been a little bigger then other girls the medication the put me on made me gain weight. The boys at the school and other students would talk about how fat and ugly I am.
    I then began to starve myself at times and made myself throw up after I would eat at times. I hated myself and who I was. I hated my skin, my body, and my hair!

    There was even times when the teachers would make us pick groups and have a partner, No one wanted me in their group, they would fight about having to be partner’s with me. I even remember the boys getting in to a fist fight about not wanting me in their group. Even in P.E or gym class they would never pick me to be on their teams and if they did have to pick me they would blame me for them losing the game!

    I was never invited to parties, I didn’t have any friends I could call and talk to on the phone or text like others my age. I was never invited to a sleep over. Like other girls, I never even had boyfriends or been invited on a date or anything like others my age. I would try to talk to guys but they would tell me I was too ugly, fat, stupid or just not good enough, I didn’t have a very good childhood. Other things that normal children got to do, I didn’t get to do. I did not get to go to prom or high school and was not able to get a education. I tried very hard to live up to people’s expectations but people treated me like I was never going to be good enough. On top of that because of my Autism Spectrum Disorder I don’t understand sarcasm or read body language or make eye contact. If I did make a friend they would leave and not want anything to do with me.

    The thing about school is, you go home you look in the mirror you cry you think you are fat you think you are ugly then you want to die, the worse thing is you go back and the next day it all happens over again. I would never sleep at night. I stayed up all night having panic and anxiety attacks about what was going to happen the next day. Or I would cry myself to sleep.

    I would cry because I thought I was worthless, Cry because I thought I was never going to be good enough, Cry because of all the comments people would burst out. I let the burden of my thoughts get to me and the monster within me would not go free. I then became my own worst enemy. I wondered why doesn’t anyone ever hear me when I cry!

    Nobody understands, They don’t even know who I am. The doctors tried to drug me with medication thinking the medication would work and would make me happy, I then started to go around pretending to be happy when I really wasn’t. I then was showing signs of Mental Illness. The doctors tried to put me on medication they tried almost every medication and therapies. Nothing worked. I then began to lash out in ways no one could understand. I had so much anger towards myself and life. Mostly anger towards people and the things they did to me. I became so afraid of people. I had a very low self esteem. It was like I didn’t have self esteem at all. I then became very suicidal and became manic depressed. At one time they thought I had Bipolar.

    I felt the hits and the kicks of society. I was the awkward outcast girl that no one wanted to be friends with or talk to! I was having problems with my Autism. I would have melt downs everyday.

    I didn’t understand why God made me this way. I became very angry at God.

    I wondered if anyone even cared. I never had no one that was ever there for me. Like people my age usually have friends or someone to talk to and someone who cares that is just there, I didn’t have that. I was completely alone. I never had any friends that I can hang out with and talk to. When I did make a friend they would only pretend to be my friend and then they would start bullying me and it would all end up in a disaster. I tried so hard to make a friend.

    I was even getting bullied on the internet. I would try to make friends with people on there but it would be the same thing. Then the bullies would get my phone number and they would bully me by phone. They would even threaten me and I didn’t understand or know what I did wrong.

    I became very depressed and suicidal. I became lost in the darkness. I was broken and lost inside a world that did not want me. I felt like everyone wanted me to die. I thought that would make everyone happy if I was dead and gone. I then began to hear voices telling me to hurt or kill myself. The voices and thoughts inside my head told me that the things the bullies said to me was true.
    I then began to struggle with self harm. I started cutting myself. I would try to pray but it was as if I was fading away! I felt so faithless. I prayed for better days. There was even times when I would pray to God to just take me. I wanted to die. I was falling apart. I even believed all the things the bullied said to me, I thought they were true. I became very angry at God. I was angry at him in so many ways. I didn’t understand why he made me this way. I hated myself and who I was. I thought and felt like I was the most ugly girl in the world. I hated my skin, my body, and my hair.

    Every time I felt good they would remind me that I was nothing. They tore me apart I took all the fight I had left in me. I just wished it would all end but it didn’t it never did. I couldn’t take all the drama so I decided to run but I couldn’t run forever eventually I would get tired so I just took a bottle of pills wishing my life would expire! I thought to myself, If I am really nothing then no one would stop me from taking those pills and cutting.

    I was becoming a person I did not want to be and I was scared. I became violent and would lash out at my family members and people that was around me. Everyday was the same. I would hurt and break as I tried to pray! Even as a teenager I still prayed for that one true friend and someone that could be there for me.

    I wrote a suicide note with these words written on it, “I feel like I am drowning. I don’t have a life, Or nothing to live for anymore. My future is gone, My life is gone. Each and everyday I fade away. There is no reason for me to stay. I don’t want to be alive anymore, As that would be just pointless. The pain gets worse everyday. I have no reason to stay.”I took 3 hand fulls of pills when I was 16. I was so done and I wanted it all to end. So When I took those pills I remember being in pain and shaking on the bathroom floor I wanted to die that night.As I felt myself begin to fade away I then I felt myself leave my body and I was in a light and felt peace. I then looked down at my cold body laying on the bathroom floor. Then I remember a man in a robe putting his arm around me saying these words “it’s not you’re time” “You have to go back” Then I remember. I remember him sending me back to my body and I remember waking up and being in pain and feeling cold and just pain again.

    I then started to try to find out why I was here. I would struggle to find my place in this world. I have always loved horses ever sense I was a little girl, If you asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up I would say “A cowgirl!” I had horses when I was a young child, but was not able to keep them because we moved to the city. I begged my parents for a horse for years. The very first time I rode a horse was when I was 4. My Dad’s friend let me ride his horse Mouse. As soon as I got on Mouse he went to bucking because something scared him. My Dad said I did a somersault in the air and fell off. I got up and said “That was fun, can we do that again?!” I got right back on that horse. I always thought about that day.

    My parents did not know what else to do. So the therapist ask me “What is something you would love to do?” I told them I wanted a horse. So the therapist suggested to my parents to get me in to horse riding lessons. I then started taking horse riding lessons at riding stables working with horses. I got to compete in horse shows. I became a expert with horse riding through the years! They were amazed at how advanced my riding and horse skills became. The horses really helped me! I loved to jump and barrel race more then anything at the horse shows! The horses helped me learn a lot when everyone else who tried to teach me failed but I was able to learn from the horse!

    As a child, When my parents let me start using the internet. I started learning about horse slaughter and the Bureau of Land Management’s cruel wild horse round ups! I became on fire for the horses and wanted to do anything to stop the slaughter and round ups. So I started getting involved in horse advocacy.

    I could not deal with things anymore they were getting A LOT worse with school. The bullying was worse then what it ever was. I wanted to kill myself. So the day I decided that I was going to kill myself and end it all Something amazing happened! My Dad got me my very own horse. He was not just a horse. He was a very special horse. He was a rescue horse that was saved from abuse and slaughter.

    My Dad and his friend took me to meet this horse. He was a lot like me. He was broken and wanted to just give up! When I first met the horse I laughed because he had a lip that hanged down and I thought to myself “What happened to this horse?” I then began to look closer at the horse. He had many different scars. The biggest scar was on the side of his face. He was missing part of his cheek bone and he had nerve damage from abuse so his lip hanged down and he had no feeling on that side of his face. My dad’s friend told me “Life has not always been good to him!” His drooping lip brought the inspiration to his name, The King Elvis.

    They told me I would be the perfect owner to show him the tender love and care, and compassion that he needed. That is when I realized the horse was just like me. When I looked at the horse I could see myself. I realized that the horse was a lot like me. I had things in common with this horse because we were scared of people and had trust issues. We both had scars. He had more physical scars that people could see, I mostly had emotional ones.

    Then suddenly my world began to change. When I looked in to the eyes of this horse I could see and feel the healing hands of God. I felt nothing but love and all the sadness and anger left my body. I felt true love. That one horse began to change my whole life! My life had made a huge turning point! I could even feel God reaching out to me from this horse. That horse saved me from suicide that night. It touched my heart in very many different ways. The King Elvis saved my life – and I saved his life but most of all he saved mine!

    God had finally answered my prayers. God finally sent me my true friend and it was that beautiful quarter horse named The King Elvis! I never knew the horse was going to be the answer to my prayers! That horse became my true best friend I would go out and ride him for hours. When I had a bad day, I would either ride him, or just lay my head on his shoulder and cry my eyes out. He would never move to get away from me. He always made me feel better and I knew he would always be there for me to ride, talk to, or cry on his big brown shoulder. I and that horse had some adventures together. He always knew how to make me laugh and smile. He was my symbol of hope and happiness.

    God really does work in mysterious ways. I never knew that the horse was going to be the answer to all my prayers! Sometimes God does not give us exactly what we ask for. God gives us what we need and what is best for us! Just look at what all I was praying for, He gave me the horse!

    The King Elvis even helped me turn my Autism in to a gift. The King Elvis gave me compassion when no one else would. That horse helped me overcome disabilities when no one else could. He was even there for me when no one else was there for me. He was able to teach me new things. That horse even re-built my battered self-esteem.

    I then began to work with all kinds of horses, I finally got to succeed and win at something at the horse shows I won all 1st and 2nd place! For once in my life, I was in control of something instead of something being in control of me! My Autism became a lot milder. The Autism is still there but is now a gift. My family even saw a difference in me. I never was able to smile until I got on the back of the horse on The King Elvis and got to ride was when I got my first smile! I never felt so free and happy in my life.

    Before horses I tried all those Autism therapies but none of them seemed to work. The only thing that helped me was the horses and riding. I then started to use horse riding as a type of therapy. When I climb in the saddle all my problems I have just melt away. When I ride I feel like I am on top of the world, It feels like I can conquer the world. The Autism melt downs even started to go away. I am able to overcome depression and anxiety with the horse. I no longer suffer. I finally found my place and happiness in this world. I believe that the horse can be a strong cure for depression and anxiety. Horses made a huge difference in my life. Horses give me the courage to face the world around me.

    I know they say there is no known cure for Autism, but horses help! If you give them the chance they will help. The horse has opened up a whole new world for me. There is a healing power in horses and I am living proof of that. I can see the healing hands of God when I look in to their eyes. Horses have really saved my life. From this day they still continue to save me and help me overcome obstacles no matter what may stand in my way! The horse is what gave me my voice!

    Here is a poem I wrote for the first horse who saved my life,
    “The King Elvis I remember the day I came to save you, I knew that I needed you as much as you needed me. This is the place I will stay, this is the place I will be, forever just you and me. When I looked into your eyes and you looked into my eyes, it was like you could read my mind. You would never let me fall behind. I knew you were treated bad, and I knew you were sad. You would never give up on me as I would never give up on you. Oh, how could anyone do this to you, you have two big brown eyes full of love and a heart of gold. I will never let you go. You are the part of me that I need, the part that makes me complete. You are the true meaning between love and friendship. You take my pain away. On a rainy day you brighten my days. You make my world a better place. I will never let you fade away you are here to stay.” – Meghan Dixon.

    The King Elvis died of old age. But even though he is gone his memory lives on. He is a real true hero and needs to be remembered as one! I now dedicate all my advocacy work I do for the horses in remembrance of The King Elvis. I wrote this tribute for The King Elvis, The King Elvis – The horse that saved my life. When my mind was filled with darkness, my life was merely a plight, but then you showed me a light you helped me fight my fights. You were the only one who could see all the pain that I would hide. When there seemed to be no more days but a continuous night, you gave me a happy life, with all this grief and strife. You killed the darkness with your light when there wasn’t glimpse of it in sight. But since you went away, all I can do today is keep walking on my way. No matter what it takes or how impossible they assume, I will not give up on you, I will do all I can to save others like you!
    – Meghan Dixon

    I am now a horse advocate fighting to win freedom back for America’s wild horses and fighting to stop horse slaughter! Being a horse advocate has taught me a lot of important things in life. Including to always stand up and speak out for what it right and to let your voice be heard! It also had taught me to always speak the truth! All that because The King Elvis gave me my voice and the courage to stand up and speak out for what is right!

    The King Elvis saved my soul. He helped me find my faith; I was able to accept Jesus as my Lord and savior. I am now saved because God sent that horse to help me. Like what it says in the Bible about how when bad things happen greater and good things come out of it. I got to experience that with The King Elvis. Now because of that horse my faith has been made stronger. I now have 2 horses named Ebony, and The Great Cass Ole’s Beau who is the last grandson to Cass Ole that continue to help me!

    The horse showed me that every night I would wake up to a brighter day and that time I tried to over dose and take my life away I now realized was I was put here for. I was put here to fight for these horses! This is why I do what I do! Horses saved my life they helped me over come many things! With the help from the horse I defeated depression and was able to survive suicide!

    I then had to drop out of school and was not able to go to high school. I tried going to a charter school but was bullied the same there too. I tried out for other schools but got discriminated against. So all I got was a 8th grade education. Even though I was not able to go to school does not mean that I don’t have a future. I plan to fight for these horses! It is my dream to open up my own horse rescue and help horses and other people that are going through the same things I went through. I plan to be a inspiration to others.

    I was then able to meet the wild mustang horses and got to see them running free in their natural habitat. Those wild horses gave me so much hope, courage and strength just getting to see those wild horses run free helped me get back on my feet!

    I made my own Facebook pages and joined advocacy groups to help stop horse slaughter and round ups. I try my best to educate others about the horrors of horse slaughter, abuse, and round ups. Horse slaughter and the round ups of wild horses in inherently cruel. there is no reason for them. They do it for greed and money. American’s do not eat horse meat for cultural reasons. Horse meat is also toxic. Horses are raised as companions and pets – not food animals. Horses are given medications that they need to survive such as worm medicine, bute, and more. Horses are given these medicines that have toxic substances that the FDA forbids in animals that were made for human consumption like cows, chickens, pigs, and fish. Horses were not put here to be slaughtered. The BLM (Bureau of Land Management) are rounding up wild horses for no reason at all. All they want is money. They round them up with helicopters or by land and shove them in filthy holding pens. They get taken from their families. The wild Mustang Horses are in great amounts of danger. They are almost extinct. They try to tell lies about why they round them up. The reason why they are doing this is because they want the mineral rights on the land and they want to replace the horses with cattle. They are even sending the wild mustang horses that they round up to slaughter. The mustang is a american icon. Horses form bonds and become close to their friends and families to separate them from their friends and families terrorizes them. The horses that are being rounded up are just as scared as I was when I had to go to school. They are taken to a strange place where they are bullied and abused. I know how they feel. I know how scared they are. I know for sure how these mustangs feel. They are happily living with their families; safe and secure in their own little worlds. Then these scary people come and turn their world upside down. I know they are scared, confused and stripped of everything they knew and had. They are taken to strange places and mistreated. Alone and separated from their families.

    It is now my mission to save these horses. I have dedicated my life just to save them. The horse gave me my voice when I could not speak for myself. So I will continue to fight for them. The wild Mustang horses earned their freedom. The horse is what helped built America. So all I want is to see these horses run free. Horses even help some people do things that they can not do on their own like walk, run, and jump. They also comfort you and accept you for who you are they love you unconditionally. Being a horse advocate has taught me one important thing in life…. ALWAYS stand up and speak out for what is right, Let your voice be heard. What is the point of life, When you can’t stand up, speak out, or fight for what’s right?… ALWAYS stand up. Horses have helped me fight my battles and win my wars. Now it is time for me to do the same for them. I even wrote a poem for the wild mustang horses who lost their freedom, And life from the BLM. Called, “The American Wild Mustang- I was loved in the hearts of the beautiful people. I was their symbol of hope, And freedom. I was also a symbol of Power, Grace, Beauty, Nobility, Strength, But most of all when people seen me running free, It gave them a strong motivation for life. Some say that we earned our freedom, We even fought with our soldiers as we carried them to war, I even helped build America. As I am a big part of history…. I am the American Wild Mustang!”

    Horses helped me fight my battles and win my wars. They set me free, free from depression, anxiety, the struggles of Autism, even bipolar and mental illness! I am free because of the horse! Now it is my promise to them to set them free! The horse has helped me heal and recover they saved my life. I would not be here today without the horse.
    Those wild horses are hope for others like me. Killing them is like killing off our hope STOP killing our hope, PLEASE!

  14. YES, LETS STAND UP AND FIGHT!!!! WE THE PEOPLE HAVE THE RIGHT AND WILL BE SILENCED NO MORE!!!!!

  15. This is crazy crap… Freedom of speech is NOT! Get a lawyer to file complaint against the Hotel and Sheriffs Dept. !!
    I have heard many people on Facebook’s mustang related sites and wild horse groups say that we need to all join forces and money to hire? a lobbyist for Washington, D.C. All the letters, post cards, voices have NO weight with ignorant, greedy entities that want power & $$$. Must be breaking the law some how….especially BLM tactics of animal cruelty!!! We are wasting time if cannot find a political activist/lobbyist in Washington, D.C.
    The government does not want to listen to us (no money in it for them).
    I wish we could have 1000 people lined up in front of the chutes before the horse pens so no wild horses would go into the pens!!! How about 1000 people sky dive into that area. UGGGGHHH, just so frustrating!! 🙁
    What is the answer?? Thank You for being an Advocate for the wild horses & burro’s..:) Bonnie Wagner

  16. This blatant denial of the right of Friends of Animals to speak their mind flies in the face of the basic rights of a citizen of the United States to freedom of expression, or speech, however the opinions expressed differs with the established status quo. I applaud Edita and Nicole for their great courage in speaking up for the long and very unjustly persecuted wild horses. What happened in my home town of Minden, a beautiful little town lying between the Sierra Nevada range on the west and the Pine Nut range on the east (a legal 1971 herd area) reveals the dark underbelly of vested interests here. I call upon these people to apologize to Edita and Nicole, including BLM, local and hotel officials, and to make amends. We must not allow ourselves to be bullied or to be silenced. Remember: everything that is truly worthwhile in life, that represents true progress in life, shall be challenged by those whose cling to the old dark ways. We must be the light, we must dare to change for the better, and learning to share the land and freedom with such benign, ecosystem restoring “returned North American native” presences as the horses and the burros, is a “must do”. Check out my book The Wild Horse Conspiracy. If enough people would read it and take it to heart, its message would make such a great difference.

  17. Here is a letter to the editor I submitted to local news providers:
    Dear Editor:
    As a former newspaper reporter I detest “safe” reporting. Unfortunately, that is what appears to have happened right here in our Carson Valley.
    Thursday afternoon at Carson Valley Inn the Bureau of Land Management held a public meeting in which public comments were supposed to be gathered regarding the impending roundups of six wild horse herds that currently live in the Pine Nut mountains.
    When two wild horse advocates from the group Friends of Animals, who flew in from New York City and had reserved rooms at Carson Valley Inn, took the podium and began exercising their rights according to the First Amendment, the microphone was turned off, they were escorted off the stage and into their hotel rooms by hotel management and local sheriffs and told to pack their bags and leave.
    Now, if that isn’t NEWS, I don’t know what is.
    How many days here in our little valley do we get out-of-state protesters escorted from a meeting?
    But, I can’t say that I am surprised.
    I chose not to attend this meeting knowing that it would be a sham. I knew that even if public comments were heard that it would make no difference. Although somewhat ashamed of myself for not going, thereby joining the majority that don’t want to get involved, I don’t know if I have it in me to be led off the stage by sheriffs and escorted from the hotel if I would have decided to speak up.
    Needless to say, I have seen absolutely NO coverage of this event in ANY of our local news sources, besides the link I personally added this morning on a couple of their Facebook pages.
    Shame on our local news sources, including The Associated Press. I certainly hope that coverage will be given to today’s BLM meeting at the Plaza Hotel here in Carson City, especially given the excitement we all missed Thursday afternoon in Minden.
    Am I missing something here?
    Regards,
    Jo Rafferty
    Carson City
    Jan. 24, 2015

  18. Keep the pressure on the BLM we need to stay strong…. We can out # them only if we all come together for this fight. They know the American people want accountability for what the BLM is doing. Nevada has made it so public that they want to zero out wild horses and burros! This is the time for all advocates to speak up. Edita you have my admiration and respect !

  19. Since when does law enforcement step in and bar people from exercising their 1st adminment right of “freedom of speech”. This is not an area of the legal system or in any state penal code. We as the people of this country have this and several other rights. Our forefathers fought for this. Our soldiers are still fighting for this. People in law enforcement are there to uphold the laws of that specific state. Not to refrain the people from public speaking. If BLM can speak publicly then so are the individuals of this country.

  20. I just found out that The Record Courier in Gardnerville is publishing a story on this in Sunday’s paper. I would have liked to see it as more breaking news but can you please retract my letter to the editor I sent you earlier? Thank you, Jo

  21. Good news Jo! The story is going viral across the country on radio, TV News and newspapers. Here is one of the many links:

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